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Yukon isn't the only MS product PhotoWorks is testing. Watters has also been playing around with Best Practices Analyzer (BPA), for instance.

From viewing comments in Internet newsgroups, Watters has concluded that BPA is most useful to "junior DBAs who are just getting up to speed on SQL Server."

Still, though, Watters acknowledges some advantages for senior administrators. "You can see what stored procedures have temp tables in them without having to look at all the code. Even some veterans have misconceptions about temp tables."

Watters is less convinced over the value of SQL Reporting Services. "I have some idea of what's coming in SQL Server 2003 for database reporting, and SQL Reporting Services doesn't really offer as much functionality," he says.

Watters also views both of these two interim product releases as "rather self-serving" on Microsoft's part. "Microsoft wants to get everyone spooled up on the new database before it's released. They want to give people a 'heads up' that Yukon is coming."

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